Odyssey to wellness : a good software resource

Good morning everyone 🙂

Just a quickie post this morning about Benutriwise software. Priya Jaipal, the developer of this excellent resource, has just published her latest Health-e-news newsletter.

While the newsletter does happen to contain a rather disjointed review of the product written by yours truly, that is not the reason for this post.

Priya is offering a “ World Cup Special” of a huge discount on the price of this excellent tool. The price is only R200,00 and I do urge those of you that may have been hesitating about buying this software to download and buy it on-line.

Marketed as a calorie counting instrument, I do not only use the calorie count function. I am working on ways to track GI (Glycemic Index), GL (Glycemic Load)  as well as Weigh-Less portions on the system.

Have a great day.


Laziest cook on earth. 3

It’s 03h40 as I begin writing this post. I should be asleep or next door in my office finishing off VAT returns that are due today. As I am doing neither of the two things, I decided to post the third in a series of light yet healthy meal ideas for people with no time to cook.

Which reminds me …. I used to have cookbooks called No Time To Cook 1 and No Time To Cook 2. …detour to go check my bookshelves …. no, I no longer have them. Dammit. Could have used them now. That’s what I hated about having to clean out shelves and cupboards because we were ‘ going smaller’! In the event of fire, I think I would rescue my books before I rescued my husband! Then again, he would probably rescue the TV + remote before rescuing me so we’re quits there!

I also had two books by the same zany author called I Hate To Housekeep 1 and I Hate To Housekeep 2 .. but that’s totally another story. Then again, I also had all the Superwoman books by Shirley Conran – I must have been mad!…

Back to the subject at hand – Laziest Cook 3.

Chicken breasts – skinned and deboned – are so versatile and I often just do the following and eat either cold or hot.

600g deboned chicken breasts (cut into bite sized strips)
Chicken Spice (Ina Paarman or any preferred spice/s. See below)
5-10ml olive or avocado oil (I also often just use Spray & Cook if we’ve had our fats for the day)

Very generously coat chicken strips with spice; leave to stand a while.
Spray or heat oil gently to coat a non stick pan or skillet. (I use a flat cast iron skillet)
Toss in chicken strips and dry fry until just done. Don’t overcook.
That’s it. Eat hot with veges or cold with salads.

If you have enormous energy and dedication, you could try mixing up the following rub and keeping it on hand:
Taken from: Snacks and Treats for Sustained Energy 1.
Gabi Steenkamp RD (SA) & Jeske Wellamnn RD (SA)

5ml (1 tsp) of each of the following:
Ground ginger
Ground cumin
Ground coriander
Ground paprika
Ground cayenne pepper
Coat strips generously and leave to stand for an hour.

The recipe says heat an oven to 220 degrees and bake for 15 mins until golden brown.
To my mind, that’s too much electricity for 15 mins so I rather use my stove top method.

Have a good day everyone!

Winter is just around the corner.1

Yebo, winter is just around the corner. Let’s prepare for it.
I for one have to; my goal weight target date is bang in the middle of it and that is not negotiable!

In our part of the world here in Cape Town, we see a distinct change in daylight hours from summer into winter. In winter we travel to work in pitch blackness lit by street lights. Added to that misery, we have a mediterranean climate with wet winters. So driving to work – and maybe dropping sleepy kids off at creche on the way – can be a really miserable experience.

I was saying to WJJ this morning that we all get the munchies in winter. Hot soup or hot chocolate are real comfort foods when you are cold, wet and tired. I will be looking at freezing soups in controlled portions and have found a product at my supermarket that you may like to consider:

Tuffy Fill ‘n Freeze Self Standing Resealable Storage Pouches

Wow, that’s a mouthful isn’t it!
Check them out – they hold 1 litre of liquid – and they could be used & re-used through the cold season.
Not only for soup but for pasta sauces etc.

Goodness sake … I didn’t mention it……

In yesterday’s post, I did say that I was a mere 200g above the target weight for the Sunday BUT did not state my weight loss to date.

It may sound like bragging…. oh alright it is bragging… but I am sure you will forgive my exuberance in the light of the multiple challenges I face.

Drum roll……. 21.1kg …… so I have broken the 20kg barrier …. not bad for an old chick hey?!

Has it been easy? NO!
Is it easy? HELL, NO!

My Odyssey demands my ALL and the making of ‘Continual Course Corrections’ as propounded by Brian Tracy. http://www.BrianTracy.com

Keep strong everyone; have a great Monday. Hope yours is not too dark a shade of blue. EJ

Sunday showdown

Well, it’s not really a showdown at all. It’s a weekly record of our weight which is recorded on a graph every Sunday morning. Our weight being that of my spouse W and myself.

It all started in September 2007 when the CT branch of our family started a weight loss competition to see who could lose the most weight before 1st December. The competition was fair in that total loss was measured as a % of starting weight!

What was so special about 1st December? Well, that was the day the CT family met the JBH branch at JHB International and all 10 of us flew off to Ile Maurice! Headed for 8 days at Le Meridien Ile Maurice resort to be exact. (If anyone is considering Mauritius for a holiday, we can certainly recommend Le Meridien.) What a magic holiday we all had and it is fitting that the sponsor of the costly junket was also the winner of the weight loss competition! We each contributed R100 to the game and the winner took all – pity the R500 did not go anywhere at all to off-set the cost of the joll!

The point of this rather rambling post is to remind us that keeping a record of our progress is key to success. I am one of those obsessive types who weighs in every morning of my life; the result is then recorded in my Benutriwise profile. I also have a weekly Thursday morning date at Weigh-Less as well so talk about overkill!!!! I hasten to add (and my spouse will bear this out) that I have learnt over the years not to stress over the scale results. The results are simply recorded without any dramatics on my part and I sit down every Sunday morning and quietly look at the week’s results. The process serves to keep me focussed and to make continual corrections on the great odyssey!

To graphically illustrate my progress against a weekly weight loss target of .5kg, I use an Excel graph. I print it in colour on Sundays and keep it in a file until the following week. A bold red target weight line descends from left to right and it is intersected with a bold green actual weight line which is my Sunday morning weight. Vertical axis shows target weight descending .5kg weekly from my starting weight down to goal weight at the bottom. Horizontal axis shows Sunday dates for 1 year! 9th August 2009 to 8th August 2010.

Wow! those dates really show what a commitment I have made don’t they? As of this morning, I am .2kg (200 grams sounds better) above target for today’s date. The green graph line fascinates me in that it meanders all over the place but always reflects an overall downward drift.

If you would like a copy of my Excel chart to adapt for your own use, let me know and I will send it to you. I believe it could really help to keep you on track to your own unique destination.

A great resource…….

One of the most powerful resources I have found to help me with weight reduction is the keeping of a food diary or a food log. It really is not a big deal to record your intake and the daily habit very soon becomes routine.

A few years ago, I created an Excel workbook which I called Eileen’s food planner. At the time, I was also active on the Weigh-Less forums and when other members read about my planner they started requesting copies. At one point, I had e-mailed my planner to more than 100 other members! We were able to record our food intake daily and the planner would keep track of each formula automatically. Eat too much and the relevant total/s would reflect in bold red!

Eileen’s food planner still exists on my computer but has been superceded by a far superior tool – Benutriwise Calorie Counter, Nutrition, Exercise and Health Tracker. Developed here for South Africans, the inexpensive Benutriwise software application is really well worth checking out. http://www.benutriwise.co.za

I introduced the software to my doctor and she is as enthusiastic about the program as I am. Pre-loaded with the nutritional values of almost 2 000 food items, the software automatically calculates BMI, suggested weight loss targets and default calorie/kilojoule totals. Carbs, protein and fats as well as vitamins and minerals are tracked automatically. A new feature is the exercise tracker which I have yet to use!

This evening I had to send my doctor information about blood glucose and blood pressure readings and I simply printed BG & BP reports out of Benutriwise and e-mailed them to her. Magic.

If you would like to know more about how I use this resource, let me know!